Thanks to home losses last week to the Hawks and Bulls, the Celtics’ air of invincibility has clearly been polluted. With captain Paul Pierce banging his recently injured knee again at practice on Sunday, it might not be getting better anytime soon.
According to ESPNBoston.com, Pierce got tangled up with reserve power forward Shelden Williams near the end of Sunday’s practice and “limped off the court in pain.” He reportedly returned to the court at the end of the training session with ice on his knee.
Pierce missed five games from Dec. 25-Jan. 2 after undergoing two separate procedures to treat an infection in his right knee. The Celtics went 2-3 during Pierce’s stint on the bench.
Celtics coach Doc Rivers tried to stay positive, hoping that Pierce’s re-aggravation on Sunday was nothing serious.
“I hope [he’s OK],” Rivers told ESPNBoston.com. “He got kneed [by Williams] in the exact same spot [as the procedures]. It’s just amazing the luck right now with little things like that. That’s why he was so upset. He said, ‘Man, it’s right on the spot.’ It’s starting to feel better, so I’m hoping he’s fine.”
The Celtics front line has been beset by injuries of late and the team has struggled as a result. Without the services of veteran superstar Kevin Garnett, who has been out of the lineup since Dec. 30 with a hyperextended left knee, the C’s have gone just 4-4. Also out of action has been Rasheed Wallace, who missed the team’s last three games with a sore left foot but is likely to return on Monday against the Mavericks. Garnett has set Friday, Jan. 22, as his targeted return date.
Williams, who didn’t appear to be adversely affected, downplayed the mishap with Pierce.
“We got tangled up, that’s it, nothing big,” Williams said. “[Pierce] went out on a screen, I showed, we got tangled up in our legs. It hit more of my shin, so I’m not sure if it hit his knee or what.”